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2018 – Night #5

Kristen Volstad

ONE. MORE. DAY. 

I will be in the shower less than 24 hours from now. Oh my goodness. Like, I really hope the others are joking about doing a sniff test on our feet on the last day because they. are. rank. 

Last night I was warm and cozy thanks to the excellent ​spot John and I scouted, but seeing as it was the last night with just the five of us, everyone felt it was necessary to stay up til 2 am telling our life stories (except Autumn, she slept through mine and Anja’s). Thankfully, we had finally accumulated enough roll up the rim free coffees for us all to have coffee this morning – my first caffeine this week, and it was amazing.

I needed the caffeine because I had my first afternoon off this week so I spent it box-shaking and scrounging for donations. By the end of the afternoon all I could think about walking down the hall was how exhausted I was and how much my feet hurt (oh my god, wearing boots for 16 hours a day for four days straight is so much worse than it sounds) when I was stopped in the hall by a woman who introduced herself and said she works for EGADZ and they’re so appreciative of the work we’re doing. It was perfect timing when I needed a little morale boost. 

Tonight is improv night and I’m unfortunately writing this blog before the show so all I can do at this point is speculate on the fun and creative ways they have planned to make us humiliate ourselves. Can’t wait!

Anja Eliasson 

One person asked me yesterday “what will you be taking away from this”? Not a very surprising question but I still had a hard time giving an answer that was comprehensible. The answer is that it is so many things. The absolute most obvious one is how extremely tough it must be to not have a stable place to call your home. Not because what we have experienced has been extremely hard, I would rather argue the opposite. Sure we have been cold as …. at times. We are a bit sleep deprived and we could all really use a shower (especially Baxter) but with that said we have gotten so much support through it all. The VP internals have been with us every night and every morning and most likely slept even less then us so lots of hugs and kisses to Jazmin and Papa Sean. Thanks to Abby and Shay for all of your support, your goodnight and good morning runs and all the hard work around the campaign. This last part here of course goes to every single one in the organising committee. Of course I will not leave out the fact that I have had 4 wonderful individuals next to me every single night keeping me warm and giving me emotional support. All the love for you guys!!!

What I am trying to say is that one of the worst things about being homeless must be to feel alone. Being stigmatized and being viewed as less of a human being by others in the community. We have gotten a small small taste of how hard it would be to not sleep inside in a bed at night. To not have anything else then the clothes you are wearing, to carry the things that you need with you, to struggle with personal hygiene. For food I can’t really say anything, I have not been hungry many times at all, there has been no lack of food (THANKS). But I have never felt alone.

I have touched upon it earlier during the week BUT, we need to take care of each other. See each other.


This week has been nothing like being homeless but my perspective on my privileges and the things I take for granted has drastically changed and for that I am thankful. I am thankful for EGADZ and the work that they do, I really admire this organisation and tomorrow we are gonna smash the 20.000$ goal I hope!! I am also extremely thankful and happy that I will be sleeping in my own warm bed tomorrow night, not gonna lie you guys!

I think that is it for me. Thanks to everyone who has been a part of this campaign in any way during this week, weather you have donated your time, your money or clothes/other items. When this is over please remember that EGADZ still exists, these problems still exists so make sure you go into their website every once in a while, check out their wish list or go and donate your time – you will not be disappointed. Thanks for letting me be a part of this campaign, I will do my best to try and spread the spirit of this campaign back home in Sweden or maybe even replicate it, who knows!

Ta hand om er allihopa, jag kommer sakna er!

Mycket kärlek,

Anja

Autumn LaRose-Smith

LAST BLOG THANK YOU TO THE FANS FOR KEEPIN UP. KEEP ON KEEPIN ON.

I am so tired. I didn’t go in and read the previous years blogs before joining this campaign so I don’t know if the last days blog is supposed to be inspiring and tear provoking? I learned a lot this week. I made some really great friends and I already have separation anxiety from 1. My orange shirt and 2. My orange shirt fam. This week has given me a lot of time to reflect back on my life and I feel I’m leaving with a new perspective. I am so so proud of everyone on the campaign. The hard work, the late nights, and the early mornings that everyone has put in to ensure this week was successful in both raising donations and awareness for Egadz. I am very grateful for having an organization like Egadz in our community, knowing that there are dedicated and passionate workers who are out there right now helping our youth and families is amazing. Please continue to support Egadz after the campaign.

The support and love from students and faculty has been amazing to us orange shirts and we will always be grateful but there is a message in all of this. Regardless of whether someone is wearing a bright orange protective layer that says “5 Days for the Homeless” or if they are actually homeless, please treat everyone with the decency, respect, love, and support that was shown to us.  It is one thing to donate your change to a charity, but it is another to genuinely care for the homeless community anywhere you go. The least you can give is your time and least of your time you can give is talking. Talk about the stigma, talk about the dangers, talk about the lost, the forgotten and the left behind. You can create change with your voice, be it the mind of a family member at the dinner table or by publically fighting for it in your community. NOTHING is too small. Take nothing for granted, what could be “small and insignificant” to you could literally be a beacon of hope for someone else.

If you have the power and privilege to say something, say it.

If you have the power and privilege to do something, do it.

Don’t expect someone else to act. Don’t wait for change.

Act. Change. Create change and change lives.

Orange shirts, I can’t wait to see you again, y’all down for next Friday?? Sleepover soon? I’ll bring a sleeping bag and some cardboard, you bring the horrible jokes and stench.

p.s. I will miss the sweet lullaby that is Johns snoring.

Baxter Kawula

For as much as I complain about the ungodly specimens that share my bedside, I couldn’t have done it with anyone else. These soiled savages are the most caring, honest, empathetic people I have ever rubbed butts and crotches with. Sure, they might be disturbingly devoted to bathroom humour, but can you really blame them? When you smell like human excrement it’s only natural to want to make jokes about it. All jokes aside, I am really going to miss spending every waking, walking, spooning hours with these guys. I am a bit shocked at how much the five of us have grown over this week, especially them. They came in uncultured swines, and are leaving still uncultured but a little less swine like.

I cherish the connections I have made with the participants, committee members, students, faculty, reporters, government officials, and every other stakeholder of this campaign. This experience has shaped not only my perspective, but the strength and size of my community. I have never felt so loved, appreciated, and secure than during this campaign. What an honour and a privilege it has been to volunteer alongside such incredible, passionate, and welcoming individuals.

 

Signing out,

Man of Knowledge

 

……Also known as Knowledge Man

John Younger

Last night the other hp’s and I stayed up all night telling our life stories. I have gotten to know each of them so well and I could not have wished for anyone else to sleep with for 5 nights outside. The joking around we do keeps the days going and I appreciate them so much. We had taco in a bag and improv tonight. A HP from last year (Robby) came and bought me a taco in a bag and we talked about each other’s experiences as HP’s. The improv show was so good I am so happy to show off my passion to my new best friends. Tonight is the last night for 5D4H and time has gone by so fast. We are having guests over tonight and we still have to clean our home. Tomorrow we need to raise over 3000$ to wax shay, SO DONATE MONEY TOMORROW.​